Almost every social media site has its own unique set of community standards that users are expected to abide by.
This can be confusing for Facebook users who are used to a certain set of rules on the site.
In this blog post, we will go over Facebook’s Community Standards and how they are likely to change in 2023.
We will also discuss what actions could lead to your account being suspended or deleted from the site.
Keep in mind that these rules are subject to change at any time, so be sure to review them regularly.
- Why Are There Facebook Community Standards?
- Who Do Facebook Community Standards Apply To?
- What Are the Facebook Community Standards?
- What Content Gets a Warning?
- What Content is Not Allowed?
- What Happens If You Violate a Facebook Community Standard?
- How to Report a Facebook Community Standard Violation
- Send a request to appeal the decision.
- How to Contact Facebook
- Wrapping Up
Why Are There Facebook Community Standards?
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook to give people a voice, allow them to express themselves, and give them a place to be seen.
If only there weren’t people out there who will abuse the system and create unhealthy and unsafe environments.
Not everyone will agree to play nice until they are forced to, so they can take part in the greater community.
To keep the community as safe and healthy as possible, standards and policies have to be developed and enforced.
Although this does place limits on expression, the standards are there to help everyone play fair.
Facebook has developed its standards to show four key values.
They are authenticity, security, privacy, and dignity.
Facebook encourages users to be authentic.
Members should be able to represent themselves in the truest light and should be free from misrepresentation in posts and ads.
Protecting personal information is important.
To keep the community safe, Facebook strives to remove content that could suggest or lead to physical harm to other members.
Facebook allows people to take charge of their privacy.
This allows them to share with whomever they want and when they want to share.
With privacy settings, members have the freedom to be their true selves and connect easier.
Everyone, regardless of background, deserves to be respected and should be respectful.
The hope is that no one will try to demean or lessen others.
Who Do Facebook Community Standards Apply To?
The Standards apply to everyone on Facebook, no matter where they are in the world, and to all content posted.
This applies to personal pages, feeds, and people using Facebook groups.
What Are the Facebook Community Standards?
Facebook Community Standards revolve around their stated values.
Each section or category of the standards begins with a policy rationale to clarify why the standard is there in the first place.
The standards are divided into broad yet clear categories.
Each category has subcategories that add to its clarity and explanation.
Violence and Criminal Behavior
Facebook strives to limit content and speech that could be harmful.
Accounts or posts that can be traced back to dangerous individuals or organizations are flagged and blocked.
Facebook will work with law enforcement to prevent anyone from seeking to coordinate, promote, or incite harm or violence to others.
Criminal behavior also extends to those who are attempting to restrict or limit goods or services to a specific people group or deceive individuals through fraud.
Everyone deserves to live in safety.
Activity relating to potential bodily harm or loss of life, either self-inflicted or by another will not be tolerated.
Content that promotes exploitation, abuse, harassment, or bullying will not be permissible.
Facebook will report and work with authorities to help individuals find safety.
Hate speech, violent or graphic content, and sexually explicit content regardless of age are all on the list of objectionable content.
Integrity and Authenticity
This category revolves around making sure the account belongs to a real person or group and the information presented on posts are truthful.
A policy in this category relates to memorializing the account of a person who has passed away.
When the family requests a page to be memorialized and follows the necessary steps, the page title changes to “Remembering” and the person’s name.
This protects the account from fraud and allows people to post fond memories to share with those left behind.
Respecting Intellectual Property
No one like to have their belongings stolen.
Content-Related Requests and Decisions
Facebook complies with requests from users to remove accounts.
Verified family members can also ask for accounts that belong to a deceased loved one or someone who is debilitated to protect the identity of these individuals.
Parents, legal guardians, and governments can also ask for the removal of accounts or content related to under-aged users.
This includes protection for minors who have become famous unintentionally.
What Content Gets a Warning?
Some content may fall into a gray area.
To decide what action to take, Facebook may ask for more information to verify authenticity and integrity, and they may remove the post until that information is received.
Some content may include a warning screen if the content is technically allowed but should only be viewed or accessed by users over the age of 17.
What Content is Not Allowed?
Any content that shows promotes incites, or coordinates violence or harm is not allowed.
Content displaying explicit and lewd sexual activity and graphic violence will also be removed.
What Happens If You Violate a Facebook Community Standard?
Facebook uses Meta.
This software is continuously improving to help police its community.
Data scientists, engineers, and others work in teams to review flagged content and take action.
They are constantly analyzing data and striving to improve the process to enforce their community standards.
Actions against violations can include restricted, disabled, or deleted accounts.
Facebook uses a strike counting system to keep track of violations and the policy category the violation is against.
For most violations, the counter only goes back 90 days.
Tracking for more severe violations can go back as far as four years.
You should be notified when Facebook takes down posts for violations.
The strike system is:
- First violation: warning but no restrictions.
- Two violations: one-day restriction on content creation, which includes posting, commenting, using Facebook Live, or creating new pages.
- Three violations: 3-day restriction on content creation.
- Four violations: one full week restriction on content creation.
- Five or more violations: 30-day restriction on content creation.
After five violations, the account will be disabled for at least 30 days.
You will see a message letting you know that your account is disabled when you try to log in during that time.
The more serious violations will result in an account being deleted altogether.
How to Report a Facebook Community Standard Violation
Meta may not catch everything.
You can report a suspected Facebook Community Standard Violation yourself.
The more detail you can give and the quicker you can make the report, the better.
Step by Step Instructions
- Go to the content you want to report.
- Use the Support or Report Link to access the forms
- Select the content type you feel is a violation
- Follow the steps and suggestions for that content type.
- How to Dispute a Community Standard Violation
Facebook admits it will sometimes make a mistake.
Their program Meta may flag content that may not necessarily be a violation.
Sometimes they will review the flagged content and decide it doesn’t violate community standards.
If this happens, the content will be restored and the violation strike will be removed.
At other times, you may want to appeal a violation.
A process to get your content reviewed and your account reinstated is in place.
When a violation is detected, you will receive a notification and the choice to appeal.
The appeals process is pretty straightforward.
Send a request to appeal the decision.
The appeal triggers a review of the allegation against Facebook Community Standard by Facebook’s Oversight Board.
A decision is to either uphold the first decision or restore the content and remove the violation strike.
How to Contact Facebook
The easiest way to contact Facebook is to use the Facebook Help Center.
Other ways include contacting a consultant and scheduling a call using Facebook Messenger or using chat features.
Facebook ads are another way.
At times, Facebook has been criticized for restricting the free speech and expression they claim to value.
Facebook Community Standards are a try to give a platform for Facebook users to safely interact and connect.
Facebook is an awesome place for social interactions.
Although the system may not be perfect, Facebook does have to continue to improve its policies and have procedures in place to fix mistakes.
Follow the Community Standards to avoid violations and restrictions.